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Published: Tuesday, May 19, 2020
Veterans Park Splashpad Ribbon Cutting Coming May 29

Veterans Park Splashpad Ribbon Cutting Coming May 29

Public opening May 30 at 9 am

Years of discussion and months of effort have paid off and the splashpad at Veterans Park is complete. To celebrate this milestone, the City of Newcastle is inviting the public to a ribbon cutting ceremony, May 29 at 10 am. The splashpad will open to the public May 30 at 9 am.

“We’re excited to have a destination attraction in the park now,” said Jeannette McNally, Economic Development Director. “We’ve had some delays this year because of the pandemic, but we are dedicated to making sure Newcastle has community attractions.”

Later this summer, additional parking on Veterans Drive and new modern bathroom facilities should be completed as well.

“We want our citizens to know that as we grow, our focus is on a complete community that includes recreation, nature, and something for everyone,” explained Kevin Self, Newcastle City Manager. “Our splashpad design was inclusive with features for smaller children at one end, and older children at the other. We have designed it to feel open and welcoming but have some degree of enclosure to keep kids safer from traffic.”

The City is also expanding a nearby pond and creating a fountain feature to broaden the appeal of the park. By next year, a 10-foot-wide trail system should connect the new 5-acre pond on the west side of the park to the east side of the park. Improvements to the park are guided by community surveys and expert guidance. The City is currently working with Howard-Fairbarn Site Design, a Norman architectural firm, to develop a long-term community-wide park plan to help the city grow in a smart way, where improvements happen on a regular and reliable basis.

Current improvements are part of the long-range and comprehensive Newcastle Parks Plan and Veterans Park Plan.

Splash pads are non-slip aquatic play areas with misting and jetting water features, containing little or no standing water.

The splashpad was paid for using a 50/50 matching grant from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). The LWCF was established by Congress in 1964 to fulfill a bipartisan commitment to safeguard our natural areas, water resources and cultural heritage, and to provide recreation opportunities to all Americans. Using zero taxpayer dollars, the fund invests earnings from offshore oil and gas leasing to help strengthen communities, preserve our history and protect our national endowment of lands and waters.

Over its first 49 years (1965 - 2014), LWCF has provided more than $16.7 billion to acquire new Federal recreation lands as grants to State and local governments. The fund has provided 40,400 grants to state and local governments over 40 years.

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